Most of us like using Macs because they just work. Windows users are required to tinker with their PCs just to get them to work properly. Mac users usually don’t have that problem. What if you are a satisfied Mac user and you still want to tinker?
Marcel Bresink’s web site is for you.
Scratch Your Mac Tinker Itch
What sets the Mac apart is Apple’s famed ability to make what is complex seem simple; wether it’s advanced engineering or a software interface.
Make no mistake. OS X is anything but simple. Behind the scenes, under the hood, is a complicated, complex, highly advanced, and mature beast of an operating system.
Apple tames that complex beast up front with a user interface for the masses, but the hunter tinkerer gatherers among us have urges to test the beast. Behind that soft, pleasant, usable exterior, lies all sorts of little gadgets and settings and tools, just waiting for a tinker master.
Enter Marcel Bresink.
TinkerTool Is ToolTime For Mac Users
There is no shortage of tools and utilities that let us tinker with our Macs. Many are very good, most are free, most are completely unnecessary, though they can be a lot of fun.
That’s what Bresink’s TinkerTools are for. Check his list of software for Mac OS X.
For example, there’s NFS Manager:
Each Mac OS X system can be setup as an NFS server to offer files to the network, or as an NFS client to access files shared by other computers. Different from other file sharing protocols built into Mac OS X, NFS has no limitations in the number of users or connections concurrently active.
Geeked out already? Wait. There’s more.
Tinker Like Dolly Parton
Sure, there’s a utility edit preferences, one to monitor your hardware, temperature monitors and Widgets, and other utility gadgets. What I really like is tinkering with Tinker.
I started my Mac OS X tinkering habit with TinkerTool:
TinkerTool is an application that gives you access to additional preference settings Apple has built into Mac OS X. This allows to activate hidden features in the operating system and in some of the applications delivered with the system. The tool makes sure that preference changes can only affect the current user. It will never change any component of the operating system, so the integrity of your system is not put at risk, and there will be no negative effect on system updates.
In other words, your Mac has a gazillion and one little settings which can be turned on to give you previously hidden features, without harming your Mac. Not bad for free, huh?
Serious Tinkering Is Free
What? You still have a tinkering itch to scratch? Enter the TinkerTool System, which works in tandem with the free TinkerTool.
TinkerTool System is a professional all-in-one maintenance tool for the Macintosh platform. It allows you to change advanced operating system settings and offers a wide variety of maintenance features. It strictly complies with the software guidelines for Mac OS X, and also uses Apple’s official instructions and recommendations for the resolution of certain system problems.
A maintenance tool? I know what you’re thinking. ‘I don’t need no stinkin’ maintenance tool on my Mac!’ Fair enough. But can you resist the urge?
TinkerTool System is very different from other maintenance applications because it never uses any scripts and is fully integrated into the security architecture of Mac OS X. For example, it never asks for your password itself but lets Mac OS X do this when necessary, always verifying whether an operation you have selected is allowed to be performed with your current user credentials or not.
Why Bother To Tinker At All?
What do all these tinkering utilities really do except mess with what Apple obviously doesn’t want messed? Good question.
Why do people climb mountains? Because they’re there. It’s part of our heritage as hunter tinker gatherers to see what’s out there. Or, in the case of OS X, what’s in there.
Yes, you can change hidden preference settings, add controls to functions you didn’t know you could control, and, in general, do not so productive things to your Mac that if you show your friends, they’ll think more of your geek prowess, but privately curse you for tempting them to tinker, too.
In other words, what you can tinker with on your Mac is almost infinite in nature, despite the fact that none of the tinkering is really productive.
Isn’t that what tinkering is all about?